I am not too old for much but I am too old for the kind of mess that is the trademark of what has become the mother(f-er) of all reality television series, MTV’s The Real World. I can barely remember what it like was like before people from different backgrounds decided to live in a house and proceed to act like asses in front of a national audience.
The Real World began in the NYC and it has returned to the NYC (more specifically Brooklyn) bringing back what made the series interesting, exciting and appointment viewing. Sure the people are good looking but there is more to them than just pretty faces, flat abs, and tight butts. They have stories to tell – interesting, heartfelt and potentially transformational.
There is Ryan, the guy from a small town who is an Iraq War veteran. He keeps down the noise in his head by writing about his experiences in an book and in songs. The tune he played for fellow castmate Chet was damn good. The boy’s got talent and wants to take it to the next level. Sounds like a wonderful guy? Well, not exactly. He’s a little too macho and was quick to try to out Katelynn, the girl with a real secret. Wanna know?
You know me I can’t keep a secret. Katelynn is transgendered – post op transgen. She had the operation approximately 3 months prior to appearing on the show. (By the way, Ryan referred to Katelynn as “it” during a conversation with JD and Chet. Mr. Sensitive? NOT!!!) She seems like a nice enough girl, quite sensitive. But did I hear her mention having participated in a 5-way? Perhaps my ears deceived me. God, I hope so. I like my fuckery metaphorical, virtual even, not actual. With that said, sistah had me crying at the end of the first episode as she shared with JD during a cab ride the rejection and confusion she felt growing up.
As for JD, a gay dolphin trainer from Miami, he has quickly become Katelynn’s protector. He, like Katelynn, struggled growing up having been completely rejected by his family. He was the first to sense that Katelynn was transgendered. I am not sure how I feel about him. It seems that the hedge of protection he is building around he and Katelynn might become a wedge between them and the other castmembers.
The rest of the cast seem to be cut from the usual Real World cloth:
Devyn – A former teen beauty queen with a big rack who wants to sing and act. The only twist: She’s a ditzy, vapid black girl. I guess this is an “improvement” over the “angry black girl” which I have had more than enough of. She has a crush on Scott.
Scott – He’s from New Hampshire. (I know, “So what?”). He works at a gym as a personal trainer and seems to be obsessed with fitness. He wants to pursue modeling and acting. Now, if he and Devon hook up, maybe we can have some hot interracial love. Nice way to usher in the Age of Obama.
Baya – She’s from Salt Lake City but is not a Mormon. She wants to dance professionally. That’s it. Sorry.
Chet – He’s also from Salt Lake City and unlike Baya, he is a Mormon. There is something about this guy that screams “GAY!” Even he admitted that people think he’s gay. His roommate is Ryan and they are fast becoming friends. (Not in that way. At least I don’t think so.) Will the Real World have a coming out party for our dear Chet?
Sarah – She’s the resident wild girl with the tats and the bisexual past. The aspiring art therapist who wants to help victims of sexual abuse (Sounds like a possible revelation) is in a committed relationship with a guy — her first.
I am so glad that it seems like The Real World has gotten back in touch with its roots — good stories, interesting and thought-provoking conflict.
Looks like Ryan may have to go back to Iraq. In the following clips receives the heartbreaking news and shares it with Scott his roommate.